The Federal Way Public Schools Scholar Advisory to the Superintendent Team had the opportunity to interact and learn from Amazon professionals on a field trip to the technology company’s headquarters on April 24.
During a question and answer panel, scholars asked Amazon employees questions about the company, their personal career journey, and heard advice on how to become college and career ready.
The panel included professionals in a variety of departments within the organization including Labor & Employment Corporate Counsel Tobias Spruill-Lewis, Employee Services Content Strategist Ashley Gordon, Amazon.com Vendor Specialist Nyiesha Jones and Amazon Web Services Security SPEAR Team Program Manager Garrett Garcia.
Two Decatur High School alumni also made up the panel including Amazon Web Services Network Technician Paul Scherer and Amazon Web Services Data Security Specialist Shaude’ Moore.
Scholars expressed how the panel was a valuable way to learn about the company and prepare them for success after high school.
“I really liked their tips, because they gave us little life hacks, and it wasn’t really something that people tell you all of the time,” said an eighth-grade student from Totem Middle School. “This was more of their standards that help them succeed.”
A Thomas Jefferson tenth-grade scholar shared the advice that he took away from the panel. He said, “You can take many different pathways to get where you want in the future, and there’s many different ways to be successful, and it’s different for every person.”
Interactions like this with professionals in various fields provide the opportunity for scholars to explore different career pathways in their middle and high school years and better prepares them for post-secondary opportunities.
Scholars also asked questions about the work climate at the company, what training or post-secondary education was needed for various positions, and the role of diversity in the workplace. In addition to the panel, scholars toured the spherical conservatories known as The Amazon Spheres located on the campus.
The Scholar Advisory to the Superintendent was established in 2016 by FWPS Superintendent Dr. Tammy Campbell. This group of diverse scholars includes a representative from each secondary school in FWPS in order to provide student voice and perspective on how things are going throughout the district.
Students in the team attend leadership and educational opportunities throughout the year. This field trip experience supports persistence to graduation and access to STEAM experiences, part of goal five of the district’s strategic plan.